Are there many AS who have had a relatively normal childhood

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saywhatyamean
Snowy Owl
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13 Oct 2009, 12:55 pm

No horrifying stories here either.

I was born in Australia in 1967, I grew up the only girl born in the middle of 4 boys. My mother was the matternal type so she was always looking after other people's kids as well. One set of cousins, a boy and a girl virtually lived at our place. Then there was neibourhood kids as well as my older brothers mates.There were always tons of kids around so in that respect I guess I was forced into being some what socially competent.I don't know how I would be if I had of been a single child or from a smaller family group who kept a respectful distance. In those days I still preferred and was allowed to choose my own company. I had a particular dislike for being around when people had just arrived at our house, I would eventually come out by the time all the greetings, loud laughing, huggings and fuss were over and things had calmed to a dull roar. All of my brothers were the steriotypical ADHD ? ASD types (not that this was even heard of back then) so if there was anything weird about me it was well overlooked because of my brothers. As I had my own room I could and quite often and did seek refuge in there if need be.

In primary school I must not have been sufficently weird enough to be bullied. However because of being brought up with all my brothers (who were certainly not the adoring kind) and assorted other children, there was nothing that had not already been said to me or tried on me that I could not defend myslef against, if it did come up. I do remember there where lots of kids that must have been weirder than I was because some certainly copped it. As far as friends go it was the same as at home I got on OK with most people, I don't think it was ever in a mutually satisfying way though, I certainly never got a great deal out of it. I became bored with people far too easily, but that did not seem to cause me any problems as far as acceptance goes.

In high school the same applied as in primary. I had alot of people I would talk to and sit with in breaks, in all different groups and 1 0r 2 closer friends but I got very little out of the interactions. I always felt I was different but in an arrogant way, like I had something over almost everyone else. I did have a few people that I shared interests outside of school but they were rarely the ones I was with at school. Like many things in my life I saw school as something to put up with,to be endured, untill it was over and time to leave and go on to the next thing. When I go back to my home town and see anyone I knew at school they always seem happy enough to see me. So things must have been OK I suppose.

Then I went to Uni and lived on campus in a single room with shared facilities. No one had to make friends, there were people right there on tap, just busting to socialise, allmost all of the time. At times I found this too much but could escape by going to my part time job, going home or staying in my room and studying (shock horror) or pretending to study (more like it)LOL

Had friends at work, had a ball most of the time,but mostly only at work. Found socialising out side of work too much hard work and wanted a rest from all people in my time off. Had a few party animal friends at work that I could go out with if I ever wanted to, but rarely did.

I am not good with keeping track of people that I have been friends with, but I still have one friend from school that I keep in touch with. There have been huge breaks where I have not stayed in contact because of distance and being out of sight out of mind but we carry on like I have seen her everyday of the 20+ years when we do get together. These days I see her on a regualr basis, even though she lives 3 hours away from us.

I guess I could call my husband my friend. I have no idea how we ended up with each other. From day 1 I never had any hope or intention of being in any sort of a relatioship with a man, let alone being married with kids, but here we are. I am hopeless and my husband is not much better so it's a miracle to me that we married and are still married some 17 years later. I tell most people who ask about us, that we just crashed into each other and adhered. No other explanation LOL

These days most people I meet I have no intention of being anymore than aquaintances with. I am usually friendly, if people are freindly to me, but if they are not then I'm just fine with that too.I don't want anything more than aquaintanceships anyway. I have all I need and can keep up with in my life right now and honestly unless the person was exceptional in some respect (like I actually connected with them in a mutually gratifying way LOL) I do not have the energy or inclination to have anymore people in my life.

Cheers

PS sorry about the spelling, no spell check on WP. If I offend you with my spelling don't read my posts. :D



Homer_Bob
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13 Oct 2009, 1:06 pm

Compared to my awful teen years, my childhood was relatively normal.



superboyian
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13 Oct 2009, 2:03 pm

I lived a normal life for a long time... My autism is was really bad when i was little, I didn't speak until i was around 3 and a half so it was stressful. I went to a normal primary school until I was in yr 2 and since then, been seeing alot of doctors and they transferred me to another school. But my family treated me like I was a normal person until when I reached secondary school which was a special needs school until i was 17 and they treated me very differently that I did not enjoy it... Now i'm trying to catch up on my normal life since now i'm in college... :D rebuilding my normal life again :D but its alot harder than when I was at primary.


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Landon
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13 Oct 2009, 9:31 pm

I'm only 15, but I think I had a pretty normal childhood.

When I was younger (until I was about 10), I had some really good friends from my neighborhood, and they were all friends with my brothers and I. In school, I didn't get picked on or anything, and I was always included and people generally liked me. But, I didn't really hang out with these kids after school. I went to birthday parties, but I was never sure how to invite someone over, or get invited to a friend's house, so it just never happened when I was little. The same happened at sports. Everyone was friendly to me when we were there, but I never spent time with them after games or practices.

In middle school, I started to get invited to friend's houses and to go to movies and stuff. Even now, I'm fairly popular and get invited to parties and things. But, I still find it way to stressful to plan things, or invite people somewhere.



AMD
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16 Oct 2009, 7:32 pm

Thank you all for your responses/stories. So there is truth in saying that not all kids on the spectrum have a horrible childhood (bullies/teasing) or are always alone, etc. It wasn't in my case and definitely not in my son's case. The more i observe my son, the more i see myself when i was his age. That's kinda scary but neat in a way. I can definitely relate to him. It's my daughter that confuses/scares me. NT, 5 and already so social! How does she do it?! !!



ablomov
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24 Oct 2009, 5:34 pm

i don't think AS should be lumped with autism. we can be very high functioning.. a trick cyclist told me no way .. ur language development is too good. poppycock. wha he didn't see .. and what I had to explain to him in simple language is my abysmal interaction with peoiple my same age . this is an important point. so. my excursions into adult technical hobbies ie short wave radio, model engineering to name two of many subjects that interested me (with zilch encouragement from parents ... ie buerks ) put me even more apart in the shitty backwater where we 'lived'. mmmm .. best i shut up now.



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24 Oct 2009, 5:42 pm

I had a normal childhood, I had some friends and my parents looked after me properly etc. My AS caused me loads of s**t with teachers at school and stuff and it wasn't until I'd entered adolescence at the age of 11 that I was diagnosed. So I was the difficult and rude kid through primary school until the end of year 6 then people started to treat me differently. But I was still happy, because I was unaware of what my problems were and I just had my head in the clouds and did what I wanted with none of the self conciousness I have now.


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ruveyn
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24 Oct 2009, 5:42 pm

Homer_Bob wrote:
Compared to my awful teen years, my childhood was relatively normal.


My later teen years were not so bad. Past the age of 15 I was coping just fine.

ruveyn



Nikky91
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24 Oct 2009, 7:05 pm

My home life was normal growing up, but not my school life. I remember at a very early age realizing that I was not like the other kids and I was always being lectured by grown ups about not talking to the other children. School was terrible for me until I got into high school and then I was finally able to make friends.



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24 Oct 2009, 7:59 pm

Being normal will be different depending on circumstance, it depends what you can define normal, yes I was born, but due to being born 2 1/2 months premature
I had a few health issues, such as being mute till I was the age of 6. I also had a mother and a father that loved me, and siblings that were like any other always
in competition. Because of my issues I was home schooled for most of my elementary years till grade 4, then was enrolled in public school, it sucked bad because
it was a very abusive environment for a small nerdy girl who was always stimming and never talked to anyone, but I eventually learned to adjust to that
environment, but ya I had my fair share of bullying and name calling from students and a teacher who actually called me retard.



poopylungstuffing
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24 Oct 2009, 8:03 pm

What would a "normal" childhood entail anyway?

Every kid I knew growing up had a different weird situation

If normal means growing up in a little box made of ticky tacky..i did not have a normal childhood...

I grew up poor...I did not grow up in the suburbs...I lived in one of the oldest parts of Houston...
I ran wild when I was young...I was molested on different occasions...my parents drank and fought..my mom had depressions and frequent meltdowns and would do stuff like try to jump from the moving car...They were/are artists and musicians...I was in day care when I first started having difficulty in school...I guess on account of being "different"...

so I guess... nah...not me....unless that is what a normal childhood really is....



DaWalker
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24 Oct 2009, 8:16 pm

^ sounds normal too me



AMD
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24 Oct 2009, 8:47 pm

What i was meaning by "normal" was did you have friends at school. Did you have friends whom you went to eachother's houses afterschool. Were you NOT teased or bullied. Did you NOT get in trouble at school (or not usually). Things that did not stand out like having no friends, or talking to no one or wanting to be alone instead of playing with the other kids.

If my son did not have a focusing problem (he also has ADD) he would probably not have a dx right now because the teachers don't watch each child for possible issues if they don't give trouble or don't complete assignments. And I would have no idea what AS was right now (or the fact i believe i have it too). I would think (just a thought maybe) that many more kids may have AS or that many more adults may have it because they did not stand out. This also goes along with awareness, but the fact of the matter is, many people still think autism is something severe (like i use to) and have no idea what AS is.


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24 Oct 2009, 9:39 pm

AMD wrote:
What i was meaning by "normal" was did you have friends at school. Did you have friends whom you went to each other's houses after school. Were you NOT teased or bullied. Did you NOT get in trouble at school (or not usually). Things that did not stand out like having no friends, or talking to no one or wanting to be alone instead of playing with the other [children].


There were fellow students I *thought* or had at least assumed were "friends", but I now see I really only had acquaintances. I was usually one of the last to be picked for a team on the playground, but I was not actually teased or bullied by more than two specific people ... and the only time I recall ever getting into trouble in grade school was once when I dared another no-fit to go into the girl's bathroom. As to alone: I cannot say I actually *wanted* to be alone, but I accepted that as apparently "normal" for me ... and I definitely could almost never talk to a girl throughout most of my 'teens. I do not know whether other people actually considered me wierd, but I have always assumed I must be since my "normal" seems so different than any other.

AMD wrote:
And how are you now as opposed to how you were back then?


I am about the same, and so is everyone else ... but now the alienation seems even greater.


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DaWalker
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24 Oct 2009, 9:43 pm

AMD wrote:
What i was meaning by "normal" was did you have friends at school.
    No
AMD wrote:
Did you have friends whom you went to eachother's houses afterschool.
    No
AMD wrote:
Were you NOT teased or bullied.
    No
AMD wrote:
Did you NOT get in trouble at school (or not usually).
    I only got in trouble for not being "normal".
AMD wrote:
If my son did not have a focusing problem (he also has ADD) he would probably not have a dx right now because the teachers don't watch each child for possible issues if they don't give trouble or don't complete assignments. And I would have no idea what AS was right now (or the fact i believe i have it too). I would think (just a thought maybe) that many more kids may have AS or that many more adults may have it because they did not stand out. This also goes along with awareness, but the fact of the matter is, many people still think autism is something severe (like i use to) and have no idea what AS is.

Back in day, and maybe to some extent even today, people tend to believe that Autism is limited to their own perception of it. You either have Downs Syndrome or you don't - period.
That was the way schools and society as a whole treated "IT".

However I do see a change happening due to the fact at one time having any sort of emotional / mental instability, automatically awarded you a strait jacket. These days society readily accepts the fact that some people require Prozac, Adderall, Paxil, Colonopine, ect. These are a part of society, not apart from like it once was.
So perhaps in time, HFA will be as readily accepted as ADD.

BTW - Nothing personal about the reply concerning the reference to a Normal Childhood,
it's just that some people don't have a childhood to reference.
For me, it was puberty < adulthood, nothing in between.
Again, nothing personal at all, and there is hope for society and your son to fit in better than we had it, thanks to parents like you and web sites like this.



loko
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24 Oct 2009, 10:15 pm

Blindspot149 wrote:
Evaluation comprised an IQ test which I aced, the 'diagnosis'........boredom due to unusually high intelligence.....................SUCH INSIGHT :!:



i got that same thing when i was 5. 25 years later here we are.